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Spaghetti Towers


The aim behind this activity is for the teams to plan, discuss and discover what works.

Divide into teams of 3- 4 people. Tell the group that their challenge is to build the tallest tower using only spaghetti and marshmallows/jelly babies.

Don’t give them any more information, just say ‘go’!

The key to success at tower building is to use triangles in the construction to ensure stability. In fact, the best method is to build pyramids. Give the teams space to discover this themselves. Some of them may build cubes and discover that they’re not very stable – that’s ok. This is also about group problem solving and working out how to best use limited materials.

Call a halt to the tower building after 20-30 minutes, measure each one and discuss the outcome.

Discussion Questions:

  • Was it a question of height versus stability?
  • Which techniques worked and which didn’t?
  • What was easy/difficult about building the towers?
  • Did the group listen to everyone’s ideas?

Resources Required

Uncooked spaghetti strands (a good handful per team), marshmallows or jelly babies (roughly 20 per team), a retractable tape measure. For clearing up, you’ll also need a brush for the bits of broken spaghetti and a damp cloth for sticky table-tops.


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